A Bet­ter Cus­tomer Ex­pe­ri­ence with VR

Silicon Luxembourg - - INNOVATION -

THE USE OF VIR­TUAL RE­AL­ITY (VR) IS BE­COM­ING AN IN­CREAS­INGLY MORE IM­MER­SIVE BRAND MAR­KET­ING TOOL. THE PRI­MARY COM­MER­CIAL OB­JEC­TIVE? – TO OF­FER CON­SUMERS NEW EX­PE­RI­ENCES THAT WERE PRE­VI­OUSLY INAC­CES­SI­BLE. THANKS TO CRE­ATIVE AND TECH­NO­LOG­I­CAL IN­NO­VA­TIONS, BRANDS CAN USE VR AND ITS VAR­I­OUS AP­PLI­CA­TIONS TO AWAKEN CON­SUMERS' SENSES, AN EF­FEC­TIVE EMO­TIONAL TRIG­GER.

Cur­rently based in Lux­em­bourg, and re­cently in Canada and China, Lud­wig is one of the of­fi­cial cre­ative agen­cies of adi­das. The teams, led by Charles Nadler, man­age all of the global cam­paigns for its out­door cat­e­gory: adi­das TERREX. At the end of 2017, the agency car­ried out a unique ac­ti­va­tion cam­paign in China's 10 largest cities, among oth­ers. Sil­i­con had the op­por­tu­nity to test its VR so­lu­tion and learn its de­vel­op­ment se­crets.

FROM DREAM TO RE­AL­ITY & BACK AGAIN: A MEN­TAL, VIS­UAL & PHYS­I­CAL EX­PE­RI­ENCE

Merg­ing im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ences with ath­letic per­for­mance through an en­gag­ing ap­proach was the ini­tial idea be­hind Lud­wig's cam­paign. VR is ap­peal­ing to brands to­day be­cause of its nov­elty, va­ri­ety and po­ten­tial.

"It all started with a call from our cus­tomer team stat­ing that two of our Amer­i­can ath­letes were climb­ing a rock wall in Corsica ac­com­pa­nied by a pho­tog­ra­pher equipped to cap­ture 360° video. It was an op­por­tu­nity to de­velop a new cre­ative ap­proach," Nadler said.

From there, the agency worked to de­velop an ac­ti­va­tion cam­paign based on ed­u­ca­tional and ac­ces­si­ble sto­ry­telling in or­der to im­merse the tar­get au­di­ence in the climbers' ad­ven­ture. How could they of­fer the au­di­ence a com­pletely im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ence?

"First of all, we talked with the ath­letes in or­der to get a real sense of the con­di­tions and key el­e­ments of the climb and to com­mu­ni­cate all of the de­tails that made the ex­pe­ri­ence in­ter­est­ing and suc­cess­ful," he added. "The cen­tral goal was not com­mer­cial, but rather to make an im­pres­sion and en­gage con­sumers. The re­turn on in­vest­ment is long-term, since novice con­sumers may have had their first im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ence thanks to the brand. It's all about brand aware­ness. Ob­vi­ously, the project can then be ac­com­pa­nied by a com­mer­cial strat­egy. In our case, the con­sumer was in­vited to con­tinue the ex­pe­ri­ence in-store in or­der to ben­e­fit from ex­clu­sive and per­son­al­ized of­fers. A highly en­gag­ing way to at­tract new tar­gets."

Con­sumers have the op­por­tu­nity to ex­pe­ri­ence the same feel­ings as the ath­letes they fol­low ev­ery day on so­cial net­works. VR makes it pos­si­ble to be closer to the ac­tion – at the cen­ter of the story. For this cam­paign, users were able to fol­low the ath­letes through all phases of the climb. Not only did they wear hel­mets for vis­ual im­mer­sion, but the ex­pe­ri­ence was also phys­i­cal, since they were in­vited to take part in the story and climb the rock face. The sen­sa­tions then be­came more re­al­is­tic, from the sounds to the move­ments. "We de­vel­oped this project – from the strat­egy and cre­ative phases to the fi­nal pro­duc­tion – in the span of three months. Through our com­mu­nity, we iden­ti­fied the ex­perts in vir­tual re­al­ity de­vel­op­ment, and also in 3D, au­dio, mo­tion de­sign and re­tail de­sign be­cause the ex­pe­ri­ence re­quired a com­plete model­ing of the en­vi­ron­ment. A real team ef­fort!" Nadler said.

Be­cause of the en­thu­si­asm gen­er­ated in­ter­nally by this cam­paign, adi­das de­cided to take this ex­pe­ri­ence straight to the largest crowds. China and its flour­ish­ing moun­tain sports mar­ket im­me­di­ately showed in­ter­ested in this VR ex­pe­ri­ence.

"We have de­ployed this cam­paign in China's 10 largest cities, es­pe­cially in huge shop­ping cen­ters that gen­er­ate high traf­fic and brand vis­i­bil­ity. In ad­di­tion to the vir­tual ex­pe­ri­ence, we have de­vel­oped a phys­i­cal ex­pe­ri­ence with a real-world in­stal­la­tion. We recre­ated part of the rock wall that is mo­bile and in­stalled in­te­grated dig­i­tal screens to al­low passersby to also par­take of the ex­pe­ri­ence,” he added.

THE UL­TI­MATE AT­TEN­TION GRAB­BER

In terms of brand po­si­tion­ing, there is no doubt that such ac­ti­va­tion cam­paigns of­fer con­crete added value for brands in search of in­no­va­tion.

"The project is af­ford­able de­pend­ing on the level of ex­pe­ri­ence that you want to de­velop," Nadler ex­plained.

VR of­fers a new cre­ative space for agen­cies and brands where the po­ten­tial for de­vel­op­ment and de­ploy­ment is still in its in­fancy. In terms of sta­tis­tics, VR cam­paigns are less eas­ily quan­tifi­able than dig­i­tal cam­paigns be­cause the met­rics are dif­fer­ent: ac­qui­si­tion of new con­sumers ver­sus num­ber of unique vis­i­tors.

"In the case of ac­ti­va­tion cam­paigns based on vir­tual re­al­ity tech­nol­ogy, we fo­cus purely on the ac­qui­si­tion of new cus­tomers. These cam­paigns make an im­pact. When we de­ploy such a cam­paign in 10 big cities, the traf­fic and the hype are very im­por­tant and the re­ac­tion on so­cial plat­forms gen­er­ates even more vis­i­bil­ity. That's why it is ben­e­fi­cial to merge ac­ti­va­tion with a mul­ti­me­dia de­ploy­ment strat­egy," Nadler said.

These cam­paigns reach both es­tab­lished and new con­sumers, as well as those who sim­ply want to ex­pe­ri­ence some­thing unique that they will re­mem­ber for their en­tire lives.

"Be­ing able to ex­pe­ri­ence a sen­sa­tional sport, such as climb­ing, that re­quires great tech­ni­cal skills and a life­time of learn­ing, is an ex­cep­tional op­por­tu­nity. It makes an im­pact, and for some peo­ple it turns a long-time dream into (vir­tual) re­al­ity!" he added.

These vir­tual ex­pe­ri­ences are of­ten ac­com­pa­nied by phys­i­cal ex­pe­ri­ences cen­tered on a prod­uct. Com­mer­cial cam­paigns, there­fore, find in VR an ex­cel­lent spring­board for at­tract­ing a wider range of cus­tomers and in­spir­ing more pur­chases.

EMO­TIONAL ROI

"Ac­ti­va­tion cam­paigns ini­ti­ated by vir­tual re­al­ity are still quite new in Europe. We are aware of the grow­ing in­ter­est in us­ing these new tools. Many ap­pli­ca­tions are pos­si­ble in dif­fer­ent fields: cul­ture, tech­ni­cal in­dus­tries, leisure, health...," Nadler ex­plained.

The value comes from how VR is em­ployed in the con­text of brand strat­egy and po­si­tion­ing.

"The VR so­lu­tion should not re­place the idea or the story. It's the sto­ry­telling that takes prece­dence. It must high­light what the brand of­fers from a unique point of view,” he said.

In the case of adi­das and adi­das TERREX, the so­lu­tion pro­vides a first climb­ing ex­pe­ri­ence to brand ad­mir­ers and po­ten­tial con­sumers, and the chance to ex­pe­ri­ence the lives of these hard­core ath­letes. The re­turn on in­vest­ment can­not nec­es­sar­ily be mon­e­tized, but it is emo­tional. Users will re­mem­ber the ex­pe­ri­ence and as­so­ciate it with the brand. VR ex­pe­ri­ences as­so­ci­ated with so­cial and dig­i­tal ex­pe­ri­ences will cer­tainly in­crease in the fu­ture.

"There are com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nels that can be linked to VR cam­paigns with­out de­stroy­ing bud­gets! It's all about cre­ativ­ity and sto­ry­telling," Nadler ex­plained.

When a brand com­mu­ni­cates, it stays com­mit­ted to re­tain­ing its cus­tomers and wants to of­fer them prod­ucts and ser­vices that are more ef­fi­cient and per­son­al­ized. Be­yond that, there is also the de­sire to cre­ate a real emo­tional im­pact.

"For many of us, it's of­ten the first time, and we al­ways re­mem­ber the first time!" Nadler as­serted. "The spec­trum of pos­si­bil­i­ties is still very wide. For brands, there is a big play­ground to lever­age. They have the op­por­tu­nity to in­spire loyal con­sumers who will then be­come am­bas­sadors. Pur­su­ing emo­tional in­vest­ment is the right move to make to­day!"

These are op­por­tu­ni­ties that brands must cap­i­tal­ize on.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Belgium

© PressReader. All rights reserved.